Provincial funding boost sparks election speculation
Premier Darrell Dexter says he's just following through on previous promises
With the provincial government promising more that $13 million in funding and loans in the past week alone, some are questioning if the New Democratic Party is in pre-election mode.
Seniors in Nova Scotia looking to make repairs to their homes got a boost from the provincial government on Tuesday.
Premier Darrell Dexter said the province will provide an additional $1 million in funding for the project beginning in 2014. That brings the total available funds for seniors over 65 to repair their homes to $5.9 million.
But while the premier made the announcement, the question on everyone's mind was if this was a pre-election rally.
Dexter said that's not the case.
"We are going to call an election when the time is right. Right now we are focused on getting the things done that we want to get done," he said.
In the last seven days, Dexter's government has been busy announcing funding and loans — not including Tuesday's ferry announcement, they add up to more than $13 million and include:
- Cabot Links Golf — $8.25 million
- Strawberry farmers — $2 million
- Cranberry farmers — $1 million
- Senior citizens assistance program — $1 million
- Nourish Nova Scotia — $750,000
- Inverness sports centre — $42,200
"We are proving to people that all the things we said in the lead up to the last election and the things that we said we were going to do, we are in fact doing," said Dexter.
Dexter says today is all about that extra million dollars to help seniors. But if every eligible senior applies for the maximum amount, the money announced Tuesday will be divided by about 154 people.
The Community Services Department's website said the funding is shared by the province and the federal government.
To be eligible, repair projects must address health and safety issues in the home, which can include roofing repairs, plumbing, heating and electrical.
The maximum grant for home repairs is $6,500 and applicants must be at least 65 years old.
Dexter said the additional funding will help more seniors stay in their homes longer.
With files from The Canadian Press